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Expert Opinion Hydroxyurea Could Prevent Strokes for People With Sickle Cell Disease in Lieu of Transfusions During COVID-19 Blood Supply Shortage
The COVID-19 pandemic threatens to cause a blood supply shortage in the United States, and as a result, clinicians may be compelled to ration or conserve blood products. For people living with sickle cell disease (SCD), blood transfusions are often necessary to decrease the frequency of severe symptoms.
In a new Blood paper, Michael R. DeBaun, MD, MPH, of Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Vanderbilt-Meharry Sickle Cell Disease Center of Excellence, suggests that while monthly blood transfusions are the standard method of stroke prevention for children with SCD and at high risk of strokes, initiation of hydroxyurea therapy may be an effective alternative, if the monthly blood transfusions are interrupted.
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This platform is made possible through a partnership with the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America, Inc. (SCDAA) and its member organizations. SCDAA's mission is to advocate for people affected by sickle cell conditions and empower community-based organizations to maximize quality of life and raise public consciousness while advancing the search for a universal cure.